Reading: Luke 16:16-17
The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it. And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.
Jesus has spoken about the Kingdom of God and that which characterizes its subjects: Not self righteousness, but recognition of their necessity; not love of money, but generosity; not judgment, but mercy.
The incarnation of the Son of God is the turning point in the story of humanity, although this group of religious men did not understand it. The Kingdom of God is not for the few who cling to pompous rituals. No, the Kingdom of God is for everyone. The Kingdom of God opens its doors in a special way to those who were always told that they had no place in it. The doors of the Kingdom will be open even to non-Jews.
As we have said, the message of the Gospel makes us recognize, first of all, that the entry into the Kingdom of God is by invitation. Those who claimed to be part of it believed they had achieved sufficient merits to be part of it. And Jesus reveals their ignorance and misery to them.
This Kingdom is a Kingdom that is not governed by human logic and religion. It is a Kingdom of grace and mercy.
And one of the greatest signs of that grace and mercy is the way in which those who enter the Kingdom are cleansed of their sins and capable of a holy life. For the Kingdom of God does not abolish the Law of God, nor His commandments. Instead, it raises the bar. External behaviors are not enough. God looks and judges our hearts.
Why are the demands of this kingdom greater? Those whom God calls, he cleanses and gives them the means to live a holy life, a life according to a changed heart.
That’s why Jesus says it isn’t about what we appear to be… The Gospel is about what we are. And we are different from who we were. We have simply been born again.
The deception of religion may make us believe that following Jesus is about “doing” certain things, but the true children of the kingdom see their “doing” transformed because what has been transformed is their “being.”
MEDITATE: Ask the Lord to always examine and work in your heart, that His Word would help you renew your inner being. That is the work of God. That is what distinguishes the inhabitants of the Kingdom.